A convenient rhetoric or substantial change of teacher racial diversity? A text mining analysis of federal, state, and district documents
Keywords:education policy, racial diversity, teacher diversity, teacher preparation, teacher recruitment, teacher retention, text mining
Teacher racial diversity has been widely considered important in education. However, it remains unclear to what extent and how teacher racial diversity has been addressed at the federal, state, and district levels. In this study, we employed text mining to collect and analyze over three million documents at the federal, state, and district levels. We found that while students of color had disproportionately less access to racially diverse teachers, the documents under our analysis insufficiently discussed the recruitment and retention of racially diverse teachers. Our findings also reveal that education agencies at the federal, state, and district levels paid scant attention to recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers. For the states and districts that discussed the recruitment of racially diverse teachers, they primarily recruited teachers from institutions and organizations that primarily serve people of color, such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities, the Columbia Latino/a Law Student Association, the National Association of Asian American Professionals, and the National Black MBA Association. Given the findings and the projected growth of Black and Hispanic student enrollment in the United States, we provide five policy recommendations for policymakers and leaders to racially diversify the teacher workforce amid shifting student demographics, particularly Hispanic students.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Sing Hui Lee, Briana Keith, Yasmine Bey, Yinying Wang, Xiulong Yang, Xiang Li, Jonathan Shihao Ji
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